Ibis Senior Associate Dr. Daniel Grossman was awarded Social Science Scientific Paper Award at NAF Meeting
April 23, 2010 – At the 2010 National Abortion Federation Annual Meeting, Ibis Senior Associate Dr. Daniel Grossman was awarded the Social Science Scientific Paper Award for Ibis’s research evaluating the use of telemedicine to improve access to abortion in rural settings. In approximately 35 states in the US, physician-only laws limit the provision of abortion—including medication abortion—to doctors. Until these laws can be changed, we need innovative ways to extend the reach of the limited number of physician providers in these states.
Technology might provide an intriguing solution. Planned Parenthood of the Heartland in Iowa developed an innovative service delivery model through which medication abortion is provided using telemedicine, and women undergo a consultation and evaluation with a physician via video teleconference. Ibis worked with Planned Parenthood of the Heartland and the Abortion Access Project to evaluate the clinical outcomes and acceptability of the telemedicine model compared to standard, face-to-face provision. The telemedicine provision model was found to be at least as safe, effective, and acceptable as the standard model. We plan to publish these results in the near future and look forward to using our findings to expand the telemedicine model to clinic systems in different areas of the country.